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C's Visit Rejuvenated Sixers

Update: Tony Allen will be available for tonight's game.

40-9 Bos_medium @ Phi_medium 23-23
Wednesday, February 3, 2009
7:00 pm ET
Wachovia Center (Philadelphia, PA)

Game Thread | Chat
When the Sixers play halfcourt basketball, they struggle. When they run, they compete. Tony DiLeo has Philly running again, and as a result, they've won 10 of their last 13 games.

It's no secret that the up-tempo style is complementary to Philadelphia's big guns, particularly the two Andre's. Iguodala posted monstrous averages of over 21 points, five rebounds, and five assists per game last month, in addition to mightily efficient shooting percentages of 42.9% from three and 53.3% overall. Starting point guard Andre Miller has always succeeded in a faster-paced setting, as opposed to a balanced attack, and he has this team amongst the top transition offenses in the league once again.

Elton Brand, who missed over a month of action (16 straight games) with a dislocated shoulder, returned to the court for the last week of January. Philly had struggled to adjust their style to accommodate Brand's strengths earlier in the season, but since he went down, they've been able to go back to what works. Since Brand's return to the lineup, DiLeo has made it a point to ween this year's big free agent acquisition back into the lineup slowly, without ruining the current chemistry of the club. Brand has come off the bench in each of the last five games, producing 6.8 points and five rebounds in approximately 20 minutes per contest.

It is uncertain how DiLeo will manage his team once Brand has regained full strength and gotten himself back into complete game shape, but for the time being, Philadelphia is a threat with their high-energy transition attack, especially at home, where the club won six of eight games last month.

The Celtics are currently the hottest team the league has to offer, having won 11 straight, but tonight's matchup should be far from a cake-walk, especially without the presence of Kevin Garnett (flu).

Projected Starters

Team Leaders
PPG: Paul Pierce (19.2)
RPG: Kevin Garnett (9.0)
APG: Rajon Rondo (8.0)
SPG: Rajon Rondo (2.1)
BPG: Kendrick Perkins (1.8)

Projected Starters

Team Leaders
PPG: Andre Iguodala (17.7)
RPG: Elton Brand (9.0)
APG: Andre Miller (6.3)
SPG: Andre Iguodala (1.7)
BPG: Samuel Dalembert (1.8)

Key Matchup

Pts Reb Ast
2008 - Paul Pierce 19.2 5.7 3.8

Pts Reb Ast
2008 - Andre Iguodala 17.7 6.2 5.2

Injury Report
Kevin Garnett (flu - out)
Tony Allen (flu - out)
Brian Scalabrine (concussion - out)
Jason Smith (torn ACL - out)

Keys to Victory

  • Transition Defense
  • Control the Glass
  • Boost Off the Bench

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